Join us May 27th for ART & STORY!

We are excited to offer a guided visual art lesson of mindful drawing techniques paired with an all ages story time featuring stories of inclusion.

Fireside Room at Pat Porter Active Living Centre

Narrow Bridge

Narrow Bridge is a moving and engaging story told with heart and humour. The main character, Sholem, transitions genders while discovering Orthodox Judaism. Walking the tightrope of family dynamics, history, activism and Talmud study, Sholem wonders if, as Rebbe Nachman said, “All the world is a very narrow bridge.” Featuring Elio Zarrillo, Alissa Watson, and Rhea Akler in their WJT premiere, and long-time WJT favourite Harry Nelken, directed by Drag Heals creator Tracey Erin Smith.

Quilt Steinbach

QUILT Steinbach is a group dedicated to providing a safe & inclusive space for all adult members of the queer community in the Steinbach area regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Our name reflects that mission: Queers Uplifting Individuals & Loving Themselves. We want all members of the LGBTQIA2S+ community to feel welcome & have a place where they can safely meet with others, play board games, chat & ask questions, and feel comfortable expressing themselves no matter where they’re at in their journey. Publicly out to all, out to very few, or just out to yourself – all are valid & welcome here! That’s why QUILT takes screening & online moderation seriously, to ensure that safe space is properly maintained. To learn more, check out “QUILT Steinbach” on Facebook or email

Southern Health Monkey Pox Vaccine Notice

Monkey Pox Vaccine
For PrEP – Pre Exposure Prophylaxis

If you think you may be at risk of being exposed to Monkey Pox Imvamune® vaccine is being made available to individuals at risk.

Risks May include:

  • Individuals who are a close contact to someone with monkeypox.
  • have received a diagnosis of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and or syphilis in the past two months;
  • have had two or more sexual partners in the last 21 days;
  • have attended locations for sexual contact (e.g. bath houses or sex clubs) or are

planning to;

  • have had anonymous sex in the past 21 days or are planning to; or
  • engage in sex work or plan to, either as a worker or a client
  • gbMSM gay, bisexual & Men whom have sex with menThe vaccine will be available in Steinbach starting on August 19, 2022

Walk-in and by appointments.
August 19, 2022: 1:30pm-230pm @ 365 Reimer 3rd floor.

August 25, 2022: 3:30pm-500pm @ Steinbach Community Outreach 345 Loewen Blvd.

To Book an appointment at either above site or a private confidential appt before September 2, 2022.

1) Call Public Health in Steinbach 204-905-0090
2) Book online:

To book an appt in Winnipeg call Health Links @ 1-888-315-9257 or visit:

Steinbach United has become an Affirming Ministry!

Steinbach United Church is a community of faith that actively supports justice and inclusion and began 8 years ago on an Affirming journey.  Together we listened, studied, shared stories, faced challenges and updated policies.

On March 14th they celebrated becoming an Affirming Ministry within The United Church of Canada!  If you would like to view the service it can be found on their website:

October 2020 – Bill C-6: Federal Conversion Therapy Ban is approved and sent to committee.

Members of Parliament voted 308-7 in favour of inclusion and diversity in Canada when they passed Bill C-6 which would criminalize conversion therapy. The bill is now before a committee and amendments may be brought forward before a third and final reading in the House.

What is conversion therapy? Conversion therapy involves various practices that attempt to change an individuals’ sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

Bill C-6 proposes legislative amendments to the Criminal Code.

The legislation recommends five new Criminal Code offences related to conversion therapy. These include:

  • causing a minor to undergo conversion therapy
  • removing a minor from Canada to undergo conversion therapy abroad
  • causing a person to undergo conversion therapy against their will
  • profiting from providing conversion therapy
  • advertising an offer to provide conversion therapy.

Many Canadian professional associations such as the Canadian Psychological Association, the Canadian Psychiatric Association and the Canadian Pediatric Association state that the practice of conversion therapy is harmful to LGBTQ2S persons, especially minors. Conversion therapy is centered on the false idea that any sexual orientation other than heterosexuality and any gender identity other than cisgender, is not normal or is an illness that can and should be changed.  Conversion therapy is not only ineffective, it has devastating effects for those undergoing this therapy such as anxiety, depression, stigma, self-hatred and suicidal thoughts and suicide.

All Liberal, Bloc Quebecois, New Democrat, Green and independent MPs who took part in the vote supported the bill.  7 Conservative MPs including Ted Falk, MP for Provencher, voted against the bill.  In an article on Steinbach Online on Nov.18, 2020, Mr. Falk said that the topic of conversion therapy is one that generates more correspondence from his constituents than any other issue. He suggested that an overwhelming majority of those who contact his office in regards to this bill also feel that the bill is flawed.  Steinbach Neighbours received a copy of a letter written by a mother from the Provencher constituency that was sent to Mr. Falk in support of Bill C-6.  Permission to share this powerful letter of advocacy and support for LGBTQ2S individuals has been given and the letter appears below (names have been removed to protect privacy).

In the midst of a pandemic when it is more difficult to gather in support of shared causes, we must remain vigilant and follow the progression of this Bill C-6 to ensure that it does become law this time around.  We ask other allies in the Provencher riding who wish to express their support for Bill C-6 to contact Mr. Ted Falk using the information below. 

Ted Falk, MP
76 PTH 12 N
Steinbach, MB
R5G 1T4
Tel: (204) 326-9889
Toll free 1 866 333-1933
Fax: 204 346-9874

It is the hope of Steinbach Neighbours for Community that Bill C-6 will ultimately be proclaimed, ensuring that all Canadians can live safely and freely as their true authentic selves.  Canada is stronger when it recognizes, protects and celebrates diversity.


Letter written by a mother from the Provencher constituency
sent to Mr. Falk in support of Bill C-6

Dear Mr. Falk,
My name is XXXXXXXXX,  I am a constituent in your riding of Provencher. I am a registered nurse, and a mother of three children. I am writing to you after reading an article on Steinbach Online about your stance on Bill C-6, a bill to ban conversion therapy in Canada. I read that you were one of 7 MPs to vote against this bill. You said that this is the top issue that your constituents contact you about, and that most of them side with you on this issue.
Included is a picture of my beautiful transgender daughter. My daughter has known since the age of 2.5 that she is a girl, not a boy as we had assumed when she was born.  Thankfully I was somewhat aware of transgender people, and I knew that we could choose to listen to what our child consistently told us, or face a nearly 50% chance of having her attempt suicide in the future.  I had many fears initially, but I did my research, and learned that young children are very aware of who they are in terms of their gender at a very young age, and that gender diversity is normal, healthy, and has existed forever, in all cultures.
Transgender people who are supported by their families have suicide and depression rates similar to the rest of the population.  My daughter is a very typical 6 year old girl. She has many friends and is loved by all of her extended family members for who she is.  She enjoys sports, she loves animals, she is thoughtful, happy, and she does fantastic at school, where she is also accepted fully as herself.
My daughter will never know what conversion therapy feels like, but I want to write to you in hopes that I can sway you on your position against banning this harmful practice.
Here is a quote from the Steinbach Online article:
“I think folks are recognizing the threat that this bill poses and it’s just not a good bill,” says Falk. “It really challenges and undermines parental rights, threatens religious freedom and threatens freedom of expression and speech. And people recognize it for what it is and they are very concerned.”
As parents we do not have the right or ability to determine who our children are.  This doesn’t mean that we should let our children live without rules, guidance or boundaries.  We are responsible for what foods we offer, how much TV our children are allowed, and what time they go to bed, etc.  We must teach them kindness, and to treat others with respect and fairness.  But a person’s gender identity and sexual orientation are not choices for them, and they are not something we can change.  We do not own our children.  We must love and accept them for who they ARE, not who we expected them to be.  There are no such thing as parental RIGHTS when it comes to who our children love and know themselves to be.
I agree with freedom to religion, but it needs to end where it causes clear harm to another person, as is the case with conversion therapy. I know many Christians who have shown love and support to our transgender daughter, and I know of many Christians who support their own transgender and gay children.  If a particular religion is telling you that it is okay to cause harm to an entire group of people, despite the clear, consistent evidence that there is nothing wrong with them then please stop and ask yourself what impact your religion is having on the world.  Please advocate for religious leaders to learn and adapt and become inclusive, and stop harming people. When we know better we have to do better.
I understand that some folks are concerned that the wording of this bill leaves parents and religious leaders at risk of no longer being able to have discussions about gender and sexuality.  Please consider that the way we speak to our children about diversity has such a profound impact on the way they will grow and treat the millions of LGBTQ+ people who exist in the world.  It has an impact on the discrimination they will face. It has an impact on how many will be murdered. It has an impact on how many will lead full, happy, productive, meaningful lives.
Today, November 20, is Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to honour the hundreds of trans people murdered annually.  I am reminded of the fears that I have for my daughter, and that I must speak up and hope for change, especially here in our part of the province where I have seen transphobia and homophobia shared freely in the 10 years that I’ve lived here.  Please consider the many  LGBTQ+ children who do not have supportive families who will love them unconditionally. It is these people who need their rights protected, not parents and not religious leaders.
I am sad, but not shocked that so many others in this area share your beliefs about this.  I know that if you could meet my daughter you would see that there is nothing wrong with supporting an LGBTQ+ child. For her, there was no choice. There was no force. There is no abuse, she is not confused, and she is not sinning. She is just living her life, genuinely as who she knows herself to be.
Thank-you for reading this. I hope you will think of my daughter when you vote in the future.

Books that Encourage Empathy and Inclusivity

Below is a list of books that encourage empathy and inclusivity. Click the book title to link to a site where you can purchase it.

  1. The Big Orange SplotDaniel Manus Pinkwater
  2. Suki’s KimonoChiere Uegaki and Stephanie Jorisch
  3. Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine DressChristine Baldacchino
  4. The Family BookTodd Parr
  5. The Sissy DucklingHarvey Fierstein
  6. All Families Are SpecialNorma Simon
  7. Have You Filled a Bucket Today?Carol McCloud
  8. How Full is Your Bucket?( for kids)Tom Rath and Mary Reckmeyer
  9. Pink is For BoysRobb Pearlman
  10. The Crayon Box that TalkedShane DeRolf
  11. Red:  A Crayon’s StoryMichael Hall
  12. Bear For Breakfast – Robert Munsch
  13. All Are WelcomeAlexandra Penfold
  14. Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow FlagRob Sanders
  15. Julian Is A MermaidJessica Love
  16. The WhispersGreg Howard
  17. I Am JazzJessica Herthel
  18. Jacob’s New Dress Ian Hoffman and Sarah Hoffman
  19. Families, Families, Families!Suzanne Lang
  20. The Great Big Book of FamiliesMary Hoffman
  21. Ruby, Head HighIrene Cohen-Janca
  22. Hair LoveMatthew A. Cherry
  23. We’re Different, We’re the Same But We’re All WonderfulBobbi Jane Kates
  24. One FamilyGeorge Shannon
  25. Who’s In My FamilyRobie H. Harris
  26. Love Makes A FamilySophie Beer
  27. The Water WalkerJoanne Robertson
  28. Stone SoupMarcia Brown
  29. Sammy’s VisitVal Plett Reimer
  30. This Is How It Always IsLaurie Frankel
  31. And Tango Makes Three Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
  32. I Need A Hug Susie Linn
  33. The Colour of UsKaren Katz
  34. Hedgehog Goes to KindergartenLynne Marie
  35. Giraffes Can’t Dance Giles Andreae & Guy Parker-Rees
  36. We All Sing With the Same VoiceJ. Philip Miller + Sheppard M Greene
  37. A Family is a FamilySara O’Learya

Growing Up Inclusive

Saturday, January 25, 2020, 10 am -2 pm
Steinbach Curling Club357 Elmdale Street 2nd Floor (Accessible)

We are excited to invite you to:
Connecting Neighbours: GROWING UP INCLUSIVE

How do we help our children develop inclusive attitudes so they can play a vital role in the creation of caring communities where everyone feels welcome?

An examination of Erikson’s classic psycho-social theory of child development applied to our everyday lives as parents, communities, and our own childhood histories.

• Free Admission
• Lunch is included
• Conversation circles

For further information contact Val Hiebert at: or 433-7488 (ext. 204) or 379-9652.

Devout & Out

Friday, November 1, 2019, 7 pm
Roadhouse 52 Inn & Suites, 375 N Front Dr. B, Steinbach.

Steinbach Neighbours for Community invites you to join them in viewing the CBC documentary series, Devout & Out.
This series introduces us to LGBTTQI* individuals who have chosen to become or remain leaders in the church. Each episode follows one person, documenting their journey as they navigate their sexuality, identity and faith, as well as their relationship with their churches and with God. These individuals are pushing boundaries, breaking barriers and challenging secular and religious expectations of what it means to live faithfully today.

Following each documentary there will be time to discuss what we have seen and heard.  The evening begins at 7 p.m. with refreshments. The first documentary will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Conversation circles will follow each video. Free Admission.  For further information contact Val Hiebert at or 433-7488 (ext. 204) or 379-9652.

Queer Hutterite: Misfit on the Colony

The following story is not “new news”, but one that SNFC feels is important to highlight and share. Kelly Hofer is a photographer and gay-rights activist based in Calgary. Here is his story:

Kelly Hofer knew he wasn’t a fit from the start. At the age of nineteen he came out on Facebook, after leaving the Hutterite colony near Wawanesa, Manitoba, the only home he had ever known. The reaction by his people was extreme. Hear him tell his story in the video, Queer Hutterite: Misfit on the Colony.

Connecting Neighbours: Journey to Authentic Self

You are invited to join SNFC and friends for conversation and information-sharing in an event that includes a panel discussion with people who have been on a personal journey to authentic self. We welcome Katelyn Dykstra as guest speaker. Dr. Dykstra teaches in the Women’s and Gender Studies Department at the University of Manitoba, and is the project manager for genderplay workshops in Winnipeg, Brandon, and Thompson. She lives in Steinbach with her partner and two children, where she also facilitates a book club.
Please note the details on the poster, share, and mark your calendar for
Saturday, February 23, 10 am – 2:30 pm
Pat Porter Centre
10 Chrysler Drive, Steinbach

Circle of Trust for Parents

The Parent Circle meets every second Wednesday of the month at Steinbach United Church, 541 Main St. from 7-9 p.m.
Steinbach Neighbours for Community invites parents of LGBTTQI* children and youth to a space of discovery, parent to parent, about our journey in our community. We look forward to our conversations, guided by Bonnie Loewen.

SNFC in the Summer

Steinbach Neighbours for Community continues to invite parents of LGBTTQI children and youth to network with us through the summer months. Our members are happy to sit down with other parents, one-on-one, to listen and to share. Please feel free to contact us personally:

Leona Woodmass –
Randy Hildebrand –
Doug Klassen –
Bonnie Loewen –

Circle of Trust will reconvene with a new schedule in the fall season. Read more about this group here.

A Remarkable Story of a Mother and Son

Cindy Mills and her son, Ro Walker Mills, sat down with Bridget Forbes of CBC news to publicly tell their story for the first time. Ro identifies as a transgender male. Their honest account of what they both endured during those two years will stay with you. Read the interview here.

Bisexual Pastor Creates Space for Believers

“It took a many-year journey before Jamie Arpin-Ricci learned to reconcile his faith with his sexuality, largely because of social pressures he says still exist today in many conservative churches that alienate LGBTQ Christians like him.”

Arpin-Ricci is bisexual and leads Little Flowers Community, an Anabaptist,  Franciscan-inspired church in the West End. His story appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press this week. You can read it here.

Connecting Neighbours

Saturday, February 24, 9:30 am – 4:30 pm
Pat Porter Centre, 10 Chrysler Gate, Steinbach

Five presenters have been invited to share their knowledge and experience, as we explore a variety of topics relevant to our community. The session topics include reading biblical texts in a new light, scientific research, intersex realities, stories from the transgender community and more. Each presentation will be followed by a conversation circle. There will be all-day refreshments and lunch at noon. Admission is free, and donations to cover costs are welcome. We hope to see you there!

The Spectrum of Sexuality

Val Hiebert is well-known to those who follow Steinbach Neighbours for Community. She is Professor of Sociology at Providence University College, and specializes in the sociology of gender, marriage and family, children and violence, consumer culture and simpler living. Val will walk us through a discourse on intersex people, born with ambiguous genitals. Read the full description in the handout below.   


Animal Attractions

 Dr. Heather Hinam, a naturalist and an award-winning artist and photographer, will open our eyes to the evolution of sexual behaviour and adaptations for mating and same-sex encounters in the animal world. A fascinating topic, to be sure!


LGBT2SQ+ Awareness

 Besides his work at the Rainbow Resource Centre, Muhammed Ahsan has facilitated leadership retreats and conferences throughout North America and the European Union, promoting cultural awareness about sexual identity, and focusing on a wide variety of learning interventions and policy-consulting assignments. He delivers his sessions with a contagious exuberance and energy that leave his listeners enthused for positive change.


A Place at the Table

They are Kalyn Falk and Ro Walker Mills are leading a session together, and theirs is a powerful story of friendship that grew out of learning from each other, creating space for each other, and ultimately becoming co-founders and co-directors of a social enterprise for transmen.


 Bible Reception Without Borders

Please join us on Feb. 24th to hear Randall Holm, our first presenter at Connecting Neighbours. Click on the poster below to read more on this session.

An Invitation to Donate

As December arrives, Steinbach Neighbours for Community is offering its followers an opportunity to add us to your “Giving Season”.  As a non-profit organization that receives no funding for projects and operating expenses, your highly valued donation allows us to continue and enhance our current programs within our community and beyond. Please go to our Donate page for more information. We thank you for your support.

The Gender Revolution

How Science Is Helping Us Understand Gender

In January 2017, National Geographic published a special, single-topic issue on the shifting landscape of gender. In their words, “To a degree unimaginable a decade ago, the intensely personal subject of gender identity has entered the public square. In this special issue of the magazine, we look at cultural, social, biological and personal aspects of gender.”

Click on the link to read the articles.

Erica Lea to Become First Openly LGBTQ Lead Pastor of Mennonite Church USA

Take this link to a news release introducing Erica Lea and the church in which she has been called to be a pastor. Following her studies at George W. Truett Theological Seminary in Texas, she served as interim pastor at Houston Mennonite Church, and it’s here that she developed a deep appreciation of Anabaptist theology and history. Erica Lea is the first openly LGBTQ individual to be called as a solo pastor in Mennonite Church USA.

Prayers for Bobby

Friday, October 27 at 7:00 p.m.
Steinbach Cultural Arts Centre, 304-2nd St.
Free Admission

Steinbach Neighbours for Community invites you to a movie night. Prayers for Bobby is a true story. Mary Griffith fights to “cure” her gay son. Although he tries to please his mother, Bobby cannot change, and his depression leads to suicide. Mary questions her faith and searches for comfort, ultimately changing her views in ways that she never could have imagined. A touching and ultimately healing story.

Join us for an opportunity to reflect and engage in conversation as this movie invites us to take a deeper look at a family divided and how they find strength and truth. For more information, contact

Laughter is Sacred Space

Friday, May 12, 2017, 7:30 p.m.
Steinbach Regional Secondary School Theatre

Steinbach Neighbours for Community, in partnership with Eden Health Care Services, welcomes the return of Ted Swartz, who brought us Listening for Grace two years ago. Laughter is Sacred Space is part of Ted’s Human Faces Tour, in recognition of Mental Health Awareness month.

In this gritty and dramatic show, Ted walks us through his relationship with friend and business partner, Lee Eshleman, whose death by suicide stunned his community. Ted explores the paradox of working with a comedic partner struggling with bipolar disorder, as well as the challenge of writing and performing stories about God while experiencing the absence of God after Lee’s death.
Using multi-media and his twenty years of storytelling experience, Laughter is Sacred Space is honest, funny and vulnerable, and reveals the unique journey of working as a comedic actor under the shadow of a mental illness, offering hope and humour in a way that only Ted could deliver.
You can learn more about Ted Swartz and find a preview of the play at:
Tickets $12, available now at the Steinbach Arts Centre.

Still Listening…Let’s Talk!

Steinbach Neighbours for Community invites you to an informal evening of conversation on February 9, 2017, 7 p.m. at the Steinbach Cultural Arts Centre, 302 Second St.

We continue to follow up on the interest generated by Still Listening, aware that safe and meaningful conversation is a goal highly appreciated in our community. We hope that the relaxed atmosphere and the promise of wholesome dialogue will encourage you to join us. There will be snacks 🙂

Steinbach Neighbours will soon be launching a Parents of LGBTTQI* network group. Stay tuned for details about this exciting new chapter!

Still Listening: Feedback

It has been one month since Still Listening: Voices Among Us, and Steinbach Neighbours for Community would like to share the positive feedback that has flooded our inboxes and that has been the subject of conversations in our community. We continue to be grateful for the opportunity to gather and offer the stories that were told, and to play a part in calling our community to be better for everyone. Thank you for listening, for hearing and for answering that call.

And stay tuned for our community conversation follow-up evening in February!

Here are excerpts from the many emails received:

“The group did a fantastic job of “telling it like it is”. The stories portrayed were heart wrenching. I learned a lot about what people go through…their struggles, their loneliness, their feelings of rejection.”

“The method used to bring together real stories told in someone’s own words, offered up in a way that was respectful and safe for the storytellers, was powerful. The music added heart space and ways to sit with and absorb the text. What a gift to the community.”

“What a beautiful, moving, informative and hopeful production! I don’t think I’ve ever seen an audience hanging onto every word as much as they were tonight.”

“You could have heard a pin drop!”

“The dialogues, the music, all of it was powerful and so very moving. Everybody around me was crying so I don’t think anyone really noticed my sniffing. I cried even harder at one point when I noticed a gentleman ahead of me, close to my Dad’s age, wiping tears away.”

“On our walk home we spoke of how our grandchildren will never have to experience the pain from either parent or grandparent judging and denying their sexuality. The ripples in the pond are getting bigger and I believe these conversations will take on a different tone in our community.”

“I was moved to tears at Friday’s performance. Afterwards I went out for coffee with my dear friend who was mentioned by “Mr. Sawatzky”, as the parent of a gay son. He was truly moved by the evening and was so pleased that people in Southern Manitoba were having serious conversations about something that he and his family have been immersed in for decades”.

“I never would have dreamed that a play such as that one would have been put on in the SRSS theatre, or in Steinbach at all. I felt like the only gay person in the entire world when I was in high school and junior high. If I still lived in Steinbach, I know for a fact now that I would not feel alone.”

“I wish every Steinbach pastor would have seen that performance.”

“Thank you for the vision of finding ways to create another context for us to be neighbours for community. I experienced this evening as having the strength of circle upon circle, a wisdom that listens with humility, and the creative courage to show us what matters.”

Still Listening
Val Hiebert, centre, directs cast members in rehearsal of Still Listening:Voices Among Us. (Photo by Grant Burr, The Carillon)
Still Listening: Voices Among Us
Left to right: Character actors Larry Hiebert, Alexandra Ross and Dennis Hiebert in conversation with the audience after the show. (Photo by Grant Burr, The Carillon)
Still Listening: Voices Among Us
Character actors Reece Savard, Emma Martens, Gary Snider, Ryan Krahn in conversation with the audience after the show while director Val Hiebert looks on. (Photo by Grant Burr, The Carillon)

“A Grandmother’s Heart” by MaryLou Driedger

I saw Still Listening….Voices Among Us on Friday night at the Steinbach Regional Secondary School theatre. Using music directed by Millie Hildebrand  and a script written by Val Hiebert, a stage full of performers told the stories of people who grew up as members of the LGBTQ* community in the Steinbach area. The drama was based on interviews with dozens of people. Most of the words the actors spoke were taken verbatim from the interview transcripts. The evening’s performance was moving and thought-provoking and all the actors did a good job, but it was Evelyn Friesen playing the role of the grandmother Margaret who especially touched my heart and I’m sure those of many others in the audience.

In the drama Margaret’s grandson Alex tells her he is gay and she reacts in an accepting way. While others find it hard to come to terms with Alex’s sexual orientation his grandmother’s reaction is one of love. Later when the father of another girl in the play refuses to acknowledge or accept his lesbian daughter it is Grandmother Margaret who goes over to offer her a hug.

listening-voicesEvelyn, the woman who played the role of Margaret, is a member of the Steinbach church I attended for most of my life. I know that Evelyn is indeed a person of character and caring and perhaps that made her portrayal of the grandmother all the more meaningful for me.

Grandmother Margaret in the play reminded me of an older woman I was chatting with in my Winnipeg church a few Sundays ago.  She proudly pulled out pictures of her grandson’s wedding to show me.  She told me “what nice boys” both her grandson and his new partner were. The happy grandmother especially liked the photo of the two grooms smiling broadly with the beautiful quilt she had made them for a wedding present wrapped around their shoulders.

Yes times are changing. Communities are becoming more open to their LGBTQ* neighbors.  And grandmothers may well be taking a leadership role when it comes to demonstrating an accepting and loving attitude.

MaryLou Driedger works as a facilitator for school programs at the Winnipeg Art Gallery and as a student supervisor for the education department at the University of Winnipeg. She has been a weekly columnist for The Carillon, a regional Manitoba newspaper since 1985, and has written curriculums, script, lyrics, and countless articles for travel, education, historical and religious publications. Her blog “What Next” can be found at